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State jobless rate drops to 4.6 percent

ST. PAUL The Minnesota unemployment rate fell 0.2 percent in November to a seasonally adjusted 4.6 percent, according to figures released today by the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED). The U.S. unemployment rate was 7 percent in November.

Minnesota employers shed 800 jobs in November, although that loss was offset by October figures that were revised upward by an additional 1,000 jobs. Private sector employment in Minnesota climbed by 2,400 in November and was revised upward by another 2,300 jobs from October. 

Minnesota has gained 39,800 jobs over the past year, a growth rate of 1.4 percent, compared with a U.S. growth rate of 1.7 percent.

“The labor market continues to show steady improvement, with the number of unemployed Minnesotans now below pre-recessionary levels,” said DEED Commissioner Katie Clark Sieben. “The state economy is growing and outperforming the rest of the country in many key categories.”

Information led all sectors in November, gaining 1,300 jobs. Other gains occurred in financial activities (up 1,200), other services (up 1,100), manufacturing (up 400), construction (up 400), and leisure and hospitality (up 100). Logging and mining was unchanged.

Job losses occurred in government (down 3,200), professional and business services (down 1,600), trade, transportation and utilities (down 300), and education and health services (down 200).

Nine of the state’s 11 industrial sectors have gained jobs year over year, led by education and health services (up 11,100). Other gains occurred in trade, transportation and utilities (up 10,400), leisure and hospitality (up 7,600), construction (up 4,200), professional and business services (up 3,700), financial activities (up 2,400), information (up 1,900), other services (up 600), and logging and mining (up 500).

Job losses occurred in the past year in government (down 1,700) and manufacturing (down 800).

In the state Metropolitan Statistical Areas, job gains occurred in the past 12 months in the Minneapolis-St. Paul MSA (up 1.8 percent), St. Cloud MSA (up 1.7 percent), Duluth-Superior MSA (up 1.2 percent), Mankato MSA (up 0.7 percent) and Rochester MSA (up 0.4 percent).